Rugby-Injury curse strikes again for former All Black Squire

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Rugby Union - 2018 Bledisloe Cup Rugby Championship - Australia v New Zealand

WELLINGTON (Reuters) - Former All Blacks loose forward Liam Squire has been ruled out of the remainder of the Super Rugby Aotearoa season after aggravating a knee injury, the Otago Highlanders said on Monday.

Squire, who made only two appearances off the bench for the Highlanders this season, continued to be hampered by his right knee, coach Tony Brown said.

"It’s tough for Liam, he has worked hard to get back in shape to have a big season but his knee has flared up again which means we have to give him time now to rest it and try and get it right," Brown said in a statement.

Squire has battled knee and hip injuries since the last of his 23 tests for the All Blacks against Ireland in 2018 and ruled himself out of selection for the 2019 World Cup in Japan to focus on his mental health.

After a 2020 season in Japan disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic, the 30-year-old signed with the Highlanders in December with an eye to regaining his spot in Ian Foster's All Blacks squad.

The Highlanders are bottom of the Aotearoa table ahead of a round six clash away to the leading Canterbury Crusaders.

(Reporting by Ian Ransom in Melbourne; Editing by Peter Rutherford)